January 8, 2009

Reflection on first semester of ECU studies

Filed under: ECU MInT,Rant — steve @ 11:06 am

Now that I have had about 6 weeks break from study after my first semester studying a Master of Innovative Technology at Edith Cowan University, Western Australia perhaps I should jot down my reflections on that first semester:

Coming to grips with uni study was the first obstacle I had to overcome: the APA referencing style employed by ECU was entirely new to me as was the writing style – a reflective third person past tense that does not come naturally. I also was uncertain as to the standard the uni expected – at a Masters level one would expect very high standards so I aimed high, as is usual with my work, which also meant my workload was rather intense to keep on top of the weekly readings and tasks.

Such was the workload it honestly was a case of spending 16 hours a day, 7 days each week to keep on top of things. Apart from a Sunday lunch every second or third week at my mum’s I only went out twice to socialise – and that was in the first two weeks when I hadn’t quite got a grasp on the demands of the study! After that whenever I thought I might have time to visit a friend I would realise that another assignment was due and there was no time to relax. Even the one week term break was spent completing assignments – fortunately the university semester is only 12 contact weeks over 14 weeks so one could get through it all and “see the light at the end of the long, dark, black tunnel”…

However, the hard work was worth it – I received High Distinctions (HD) on 11 out of 12 assignments/exams and one Distinction for a group project. My overall results for the four units I studies were as follows:

CMM4106 Psychology, Psychoanalysis and Cinema – HD 85%

GDT3102 Writing for Games – HD 88%

EDU5373 Foundation Studies and Current Issues in Special Education – HD 88%

CSG5140 Research Methods – HD 90%

Despite the heavy workload my biggest problem was the two week study break between my final assignment for Special Education and the written exam for Research Methods – was very difficult to keep focussed with so much free time suddenly available! Added to that I started to get ready for the summer break by purchasing software to get back into composing and recording digital music again – a big distraction. Though I must have done alright on that final exam to get the 90% overall for the unit…

Semester 2 of my studies [in semester 1, 2009] hopefully will be less demanding – three out of the four units are off-campus [compared to one in the first semester] so that means less time travelling to uni and hopefully more time to ‘relax’. We’ll see…

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